Upgrade/Cat Scratch Fever

Leopard Upgrades, Anyone?
Rob Cot­ting­ham’s excel­lent car­toon is part of my sub­ject for this post­ing: My OS X 10.5 Leop­ard install: The Wrath of Shere Khan. (I know, I know, Shere Khan was a Tiger, not a Leop­ard, but the Star Trek Pun was just too good to pass up, and besides, my upgrade to ‘Tiger’ was just fine, and hap­pened years ago.). Last Sun­day I thought I’d try and install this brand new Mac OS on my desk­top sys­tem, a Dual-proces­sor G5 that used to be the King of the Hill, back when Mac’s used the Pow­er­PC chip…(oh well…).

Well, it did­n’t go so well. The first attempt at an upgrade start­ed, and then after a minute or two abort­ed itself. When I brought the machine back to life, it would­n’t boot off the inter­nal dri­ve any more, but would boot off the new sys­tem install DVD. The upgrade installer now said that in order to install the new OS, I would need to first erase the hard disk and then install. ‘OK’ , I said. ‘Good thing I had a back­up of every­thing.’ (I’d had the good sense to dupli­cate every­thing to an exter­nal dri­ve on Sat­ur­day night, which I could now boot off of. So no pan­ick­ing, I had­n’t real­ly lost any­thing.) ‘All right, I’ll install a new sys­tem, and then migrate all of my appli­ca­tions, files, etc. to it using the Migra­tion Assis­tant pro­gram from Apple. That usu­al­ly works.’

So, Install attempt 2 began. It worked with no appar­ent prob­lems. It wiped the disk and installed a brand new, vir­gin copy of OS X 10.5. I reg­is­tered the soft­ware, and then ran the Migra­tion Assis­tant. Some 3 hours lat­er, I reboot­ed the Mac to find a com­put­er that was essen­tial­ly run­ning like a slow-motion movie. I could start it up, click on things or dou­ble-click to open them, but they respond­ed min­utes lat­er. *Sigh* This would­n’t do. So, with the hour grow­ing late, I went off to bed.

The next evening (after work), I resigned myself to the fact that I’d have to install the vir­gin sys­tem again (Install 2, Attempt 3, for the record), and then, rather than run­ning the Migra­tion Assis­tant (which had moved all of the old junk over from my old sys­tem effec­tive­ly bring­ing my new sys­tem to a stand­still), I’d have to rebuild my sys­tem bit-by-bit, the old fash­ioned way. That was Monday.

Today is Thurs­day, and I’m near­ly back. Most apps have been rein­stalled, with a few notable excep­tions (Adobe Cre­ative Suite Ver­sion 2, which is a behe­moth and Microsoft Office for Mac­in­tosh have yet to be put in, and ‘The Miss­ing Sync’ – which I use to sync my Treo and Audio Hijack – which I use to record radio shows from Boston via the Inter­net, will be the last addi­tions). How­ev­er, iLife and iWork are on there, along with my iTunes library and iPho­to pic­tures. The fact is, I’m run­ning out of disk space pret­ty quick­ly. I think the time has come to migrate my iTunes library to an exter­nal dri­ve, as my ‘Music’ Fold­er now takes up near­ly 100 Gig. While I love many fea­tures of the new OS, it would have been nice to have been a quick and sim­ple upgrade. The fact is, I’d sim­ply accu­mu­lat­ed too much dig­i­tal grime in the old sys­tem, and the new one was prob­a­bly incom­pat­i­ble with 1 (or maybe more) things run­ning in the back­ground that I might not have even been using any more!

7 Replies to “Upgrade/Cat Scratch Fever”

  1. Unsan­i­ty, for sure, plus a cou­ple of oth­ers that I sus­pect might have also been a prob­lem as they are sort of ‘invis­i­ble’ and launched at login: TypeIt4Me, Menu­Clock­Cal­en­dar, the mon­i­tor for RadioShark, Plaxo and iScrob­bler), to name a few. Man, that stuff just builds up over time.

  2. Ouch! As it was, I was going to delay upgrad­ing my Mac to Leop­ard for a few months. One of my cur­rent projects involves a bunch of Acro­bat-relat­ed work. Adobe projects that Acro­bat’s Leop­ard com­pat­i­bil­i­ty update won’t be ready until Jan­u­ary, and I did­n’t want to risk run­ning into snags. While I don’t run any hax­ies on my Mac, I think Apple should com­pen­sate for the wide­ly-used ones in their upgrade pro­grams — whether blessed by Apple or not, it is how their machines are used in the read world.

    Did a vir­gin install of Ubun­tu Gut­sy on my desk­top box last month. (I’d been run­ning a bunch of exper­i­men­tal soft­ware, so it was time to start clean. For nor­mal users, the upgrade would have been fine.) It took about 35 min­utes, includ­ing a round of par­ti­tion-tweak­ing that was­n’t strict­ly nec­es­sary. Every­thing was detect­ed cor­rect­ly, even graph­ics and print­ing. Fol­low up with a sudo apt-get install [pre-pre­pared list of stuff I got­ta have], hit the sack and let it run. Not much else to say about it, really.

  3. I would love to try out a box with Ubun­tu, just to play around with it (some­thing else to do with my copi­ous free time these days). Run­ning that cubic Desk­top switch­er, as well as some of the oth­er toys and tweaks would be a lot of fun.

    In the mean­time, I feel like I’m going to slow my nice, fast, new sys­tem down by load­ing on bag­gage like CS2 and MS Office. Maybe I can do a par­tial install, skip­ping over inDe­sign and Illus­tra­tor, which I’ve prob­a­bly used a total of 3 times each in the past 2 years.

  4. I had trou­ble with my Leop­ard install until I unplugged my firewire cable. Oh, and before that, it kept whin­ing about a dirty install disk (which made no sense), so I told it to quit look­ing for dirt, then. Ta-da! 

    Oth­er­wise, it worked like a dream. I do like Leopard.

  5. Dun­no about how much installing Office would slow down a sys­tem, but I found that CS2 (with Ver­sion Cue run­ning full­time, and apps open as nec­es­sary) did not drag down the G5 iMac at my then-work­place. A lot of acces­sories could do the job, though. Reminds me too much of TSR wor­ries back in the DOS days for com­fort. How we’ve progressed!

    If you find your­self free to muck with Ubun­tu some­time, give me a shout — your obser­va­tions would be *real­ly* inter­est­ing. (As an aside, Ubun­tu has default­ed to a plane/slide view­port switch­er instead of the cube, but it’s easy enough to exper­i­ment with the dozens of switch­ers and effects that are out there.)

  6. Ian — I installed Office and it had no per­cep­ti­ble drag on the sys­tem. As for CS2, I installed Pho­to­shop and GoLive (I real­ly do need to get Dreamweaver, as GoLive is now an orphaned prod­uct, but I do need at least 1 graph­ic edi­tor for quick and dirty pro­to­types). Again, no big drag on the sys­tem yet. So far, the only big gap is I haven’t been able to get my cal­en­dars back. .Mac sync­ing is just not work­ing, so I am going to look to my lap­top for that piece (that’s how I got my con­tacts — one big mass export).

    Thanks for the offer re Ubun­tu. I’d be inter­est­ed to see how far it’s come along, and what kind of tweak­ing could be done to make it more like a prod­uct that I’d like.

    Anne — Strange stuff with the firewire! As for the dirty install disk, yes, I told it to skip the media check the third time around (I fig­ured if the first 2 scans came up with no prob­lems, it was­n’t worth doing yet again). Glad to see you like Leop­ard. It’s def­i­nite­ly grow­ing on me. If noth­ing else, it made me clean up my Sys­tem and App folders.

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